Immense thanks to Yvette for offering me the opportunity to be her guest blogger! This happened following a great coaching session I was lucky enough to have with her where we got onto the subject of ethics in the workplace and in which I must have come across as totally passionate about for her to ask me to write about it!
As a new business owner, accountability and responsibility are two things I take very seriously and having the opportunity to create a business where the values of those around it and within it are not compromised has been a real driver in my business strategy.
Leaving the corporate environment you may find yourself out on your own in the business world which can be really challenging. No longer do you have the security of the large team around you to fall back on, no one to give you a second opinion or offer advice, nor do you have the secure salary and other corporate benefits to rely on. There is no one around to ask how to do something and no one to talk to when the day is tough or lonely and no one to share your successes or failures with.
But it can also be invigorating, challenging, life-changing and rewarding.
It can show you what you are truly made of and help you to live your values through your business – your way and without compromise. In a large organisation, it can often be difficult to ensure that the company values are shared across all people and all areas. What may be written down within the business strategy or splashed across the communications plan may not be being experienced by those who are a part of it or those who have an experience with it. And in some environments that can have consequences, for both the people and the business.
One of the reasons I decided to start my business and set up my own company was to find a way to ensure that my values and views would no longer be comprised, that the things I valued would be protected and to provide me wh opportunities to give something back to support what motivates me to drive forward and achieve.
Over the years I have witnessed some great examples of leaders making changes to ensure the values of their organisation are being upheld, the objectives achieved and staff are happy and motivated and wanting to come to work.
But I have also experienced some not so great examples. Examples where no matter what the evidence of negativity amongst the teams, nothing was done to improve it. Examples of leaders and managers being told how bad things were but, collectively and individually, seemingly unable to make things right, not really motivated themselves to then motivate the people or to realign their area/department back to the organisational values.
People became disillusioned and de-motivated, negative ways of working became embedded in the culture and the perception everywhere being that things were worse than ever. And the consequences of these examples were far-reaching, the depth probably impossible to measure and even harder to demonstrate when any improvement or positivity took place.
It was these examples that helped me to develop a business environment which does not compromise my standards; an environment where responsibility and accountability are key to the company’s success, and where the values and objectives of the company are prominent in the service it delivers.
For every client I work for as a Virtual Assistant, I guarantee to them that I will deliver what I promise, that everything I see, hear or do will be confidential long after the assignment has finished and that I will take full responsibility for the work I produce.
I spend time with the client, talking to them to find out about their business, what they do and what the values, the aspirations, and the drivers are that have taken them to where they are now. I hope, in turn, that they will see how my skills and experience can really benefit them and their business to achieve more, without the hassle of employing somebody. We also exchange clear terms at the beginning so that they can hold me to account, should they ever need to.
“every one of my clients can expect a confidential, high quality standard of work and I am more than happy for them to hold me to that”
And as the business grows and more and more people are brought in to work with the clients, this is the ethos that everyone of the employees will follow and be inherent in all that they do within the business. So, we can all share the same business values.
It doesn’t matter how small or large our business is. What matters is how it operates and treats the people within it and around it. Having clear organisational values and objectives that people can see, feel and believe in is as important as understanding your cashflow, and there aren’t many businesses trading effectively today that do not have a clear cashflow plan!
A business doesn’t have to be philanthropic to give back and promote quality of life – it just needs a good set of values sprinkled with some personal accountability and responsibility to put them into action. Like many other business owners I know that the way we do business has to change and the way that I do business reflects that.
If you are thinking about working with a Virtual Assistant then you should really find out how I can help you. Call me on +44 (0) 7734 955250 or click here to ping over an email because the right Virtual Assistant is one that has similar business values to your own and fits in smoothly with the way you do things.
Until next time